Pradeep Singh

Bhubaneswar: Just ahead of the 2014 general polls, the then Congress stalwart and Leader of Opposition (LoP) Bhupinder Singh left the party mid-way and joined the BJD giving an unexpected blow to the party. Five years later, with a few months to go for the 2019 elections, speculations are rife that Congress will again witness such a situation here and this time it will be the party's present LoP Narasingha Mishra.

While Mishra refuted the allegations, Odisha BJP today created ruckus in Odisha Assembly alleging that there is an 'unholy' nexus between Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik and Mishra. Later, the saffron party MLAs staged demonstration in front of the Mahatma Gandhi statue at the Assembly alleging BJD-Congress nexus.

The BJP legislators also alleged that the Congress leaders are intentionally creating ruckus, favouring the BJD, in the Assembly due to which they (BJP) are not able to raise important issues in the House.

Moreover, ex-Congress MLA Krushna Chandra Sagaria has also accused Mishra of having a secret understanding with CM Naveen which is affecting the state negatively.

"Congress leaders are maintaining a secret alliance with the BJD and they don't want us to raise any issue in the House. People had watched trailer in 2014 when the then LoP joined hands with BJD; this time people will watch the movie," said BJP's Legislature Party Leader K V Singh Deo, hinting at a possibility of Mishra joining the BJD ahead of the 2019 polls.

Refuting the allegations, Mishra said, "When has the Congress not raised and criticised the government on issues concerning the people of Odisha? We have been saying that BJP-BJD are brothers and it has been proved on several occasions. BJP thinks, Congress is doing what they have been doing."

BJD spokesperson Puspendra Singh Deo, on BJP's allegations, said that the party is maintaining equidistance from both the BJP and the Congress. "We have raised the issue of Central negligence several times in the past. It seems the Opposition is not aware of it," he added.

On the other hand, BJD minister Surya Narayan Patro was today seen cozying up with Opposition Chief Whip Tara Bahinipati outside the House. He said that the fight between them in the House is all fake and Bahinipati will join the BJD at the right time.